ORGANISERS of the annual June 4 candlelight vigil have been putting on
a brave front since the bombing of the Chinese embassy in Belgrade
three weeks ago.
All this time, and longer, the Alliance in Support of the Patriotic
Democratic Movements of China had been assiduously building up to this
10th anniversary of the June 4 incident.
To them and their supporters here and abroad, this year's
commemoration was of particular significance. It was hoped that this
10th anniversary of the tragic event would help resuscitate the
evidently flagging dissident movement as a whole.
The intrusion of the embassy bombing, however, put paid to any chance
that the nation's attention could be attracted by any substantial
degree to the June 4 cause.
But if the rest of the country was so pre-empted, it certainly wasn't
the case with tens of thousands in Hong Kong. The large and passionate
attendance at the candlelight vigil in Victoria Park last night was as
inspiring for the indefatigable struggle of those trying to win
democracy for the country as it was a proper and suitable
commemoration for those who gave their lives in this noble cause.
Not even the disappointing absence of the star dissidents, now
residing abroad and expected to grace this particularly auspicious
commemoration, could detract one iota from the gathering's deep sense
of dedication and fervour.
This was the second June 4 vigil since the handover. Once again, it
went off in a way that all in the community had expected and hoped
Mr Szeto Wah, the quintessential organiser, foundation and pillar of
this commemorative movement, remarked that these vigils would test the
central authorities' commitment to our freedom. He, his associates and
their mass of followers should be well pleased that this commitment
has been fully honoured so far.
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